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Do You Pray To A Generous God?

 

The new year did not start the way I had planned or prayed it would. We had lots of illness, unexpected dental procedures, sick pets, and a minivan that started acting up. While such steep bills were frustrating – and certainly not what I had prayed for – God provided. We were all healthy again and our van ran great – for one week. Then it totally died, and there was no reviving it. We ended up having to buy a new car and lost all the money that we had put into the old one the week before. Not long after that a power outage fried our dryer, and as I sit typing this one of my kids is laying on the couch with another stomach bug. 

It’s rather embarrassing, that, in the scheme of things, such insignificant matters caused me to struggle. I wrestled with how God had answered my prayer, and I struggled with seeing the generosity of God even though a new vehicle sat in our driveway. It felt more like God was taking instead of giving. I was made very aware of how small my faith really is.

As I meditated on these verses God really convicted me. How many times have I prayed a prayer not believing God would act or provide? How many prayers have I prayed without faith? And how often have I grumbled, complained, and stressed instead of pray? How about you?

Did you know that we question God’s generosity when we get angry at His providence, or when we complain about what we have or don’t have? We doubt God’s liberality (or openhandedness) toward us when we don’t trust that He will take care of us, or when we pray without believing He will bother to answer us. We take God’s generosity for granted when we have an attitude of entitlement, as if God owes us something. And we call God a liar when we neglect prayer altogether because we don’t believe it will do any good.

If we take the time to examine who we are in light of who God is, we will see a generosity that should take our breath away.

In our salvation

Jesus took every single one of ours sins on Himself and paid the penalty we should have had to pay and then credited all of His righteousness to us as our own.  This is justification and it is amazing.  Christ secured for us a place in God’s kingdom and a future of inexpressible joy. What word is there that describes something that is better than awesome?

The more we understand the sinfulness of sin and the greatness of God, the more amazing our gift of salvation will become. Our present cares will seem much more insignificant and the generosity of God will become clear to us.

In our daily life

Once we grasp the magnitude of the gift of salvation we have in Jesus we will see that EVERYTHING else we have is grace upon grace. The scriptures tell us that every good gift in our lives comes from God. Everything including sleep, food, friends, every good material belonging, color, taste, health, family, recreation, the enjoyment of the good things we have, and so much more. All to often we listen to the words of the world which tell us that we deserve everything we have and more. Therefore, we fail to see the generosity of God in our lives.

In prayer

Kings, rulers and celebrities are unapproachable. But the Almighty God, maker of heaven and Earth and sustainer of all life, is approachable and available. The fact that we can come to the One who is all powerful with all of our thoughts and needs, complaints and struggles shows us a generous God. The truth that our sin no longer bans us from His presence should make us giddy with joy.

Here is the good news: God will NEVER withhold good things from you if it is according to His perfect will. This includes marriage, children, health, material belongings or anything else you can think of.

God will never say “no” simply because He doesn’t feel like answering your prayers. He is not lazy, mean, cruel, or unkind. He is certainly not stingy. If He says “no” it is for good reason. If He says “no” it is for your good. Do you believe this?

If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him! — Matthew 7:11

While God loves blessing His children on this Earth, He is much more concerned with us being conformed into the image of Christ.  This Earth will fade along with everything in it, but our souls will live forever. God is in the process of  fitting us for a new world, and He will give us everything we need to make us ready.

Looking To Jesus,
jen-sig

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